Kosovo ( Albanian: Kosova or Kosovë ) , is a disputed territory and partially recognised state in Southeastern Europe that declared independence from Serbia in February 2008 as the Republic of Kosovo .Kosovo is landlocked in the central Balkan Peninsula.
With its strategic position in the Balkans, it serves as an important link in the connection between central and south Europe, the Adriatic Sea, and Black Sea.
Its capital and largest city is Pristina, and other major urban areas include Prizren, Pejë and Gjakova. It is bordered by Albania to the southwest, the Republic of Macedonia to the southeast, Montenegro to the west and Serbia to the north and east. While Serbia recognizes administration of the territory by Kosovo’s elected government, it still continues to claim it as its own Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija.
Kosovo declared independence from Serbia on 17 February 2008. As of 27 February 2017, 111 UN states recognize its independence, including all of its immediate neighbours, with the exception of Serbia. Since declaring independence, it has become a member of the international institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, though not of the United Nations.
Kosovo has an area of 10,887 square kilometers (4,212 square miles ) . The largest cities are Pristina, the capital, with an estimated 198,000 inhabitants, Prizren on the southwest, with a population of 178,000 inhabitants. Kosovo’s total population is estimated between 1.9 and 2.2 million with the following ethnic composition: Albanians 92%, Serbs 4%, Bosniaks and Gorans 2%, Turks 1%, Roma 1%.
Kosovo has no official religion. The constitution establishes Kosovo as a secular state that is neutral in matters of religious beliefs and where everyone is equal before the law and freedom to belief, conscience and religion is guaranteed. A large majority of the people of Kosovo follow Islam, while a small portion follow Christianity. According to 2011 census (which was partially boycotted by Serbs as well as no data from North Kosovo), 95.6% of Kosovars followed Islam.
As defined by the Constitution of Kosovo, Albanian and Serbian are official languages in Kosovo. According to the 2011 Census, almost 95% of the citizens speak Albanian as their native language, followed by South Slavic languages and Turkish. Due to North Kosovo’s boycott of the census, Bosnian resulted in being the second-largest language after Albanian. However, Serbian is de facto the second most spoken language in Kosovo.
The natural values of Kosovo represent quality tourism resources. The description of Kosovo’s potential in tourism is closely related to its geographic position.The mountainous south of Kosovo has great potential for winter tourism. Skiing takes place at the winter resort Brezovica in the Sharr Mountains. It offers perfect weather and snow conditions for ski seasons from November to May.
Kosovo is generally rich with mountains, artificial lakes, canyons and rivers and therefore also offers prime possibilities for hunting and fishing.